Stolen Gap laptop exposes 800,000 job applicants

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Stolen Gap laptop exposes 800,000 job applicants

Clothing giant Gap has admitted that a notebook containing unencrypted details of around 800,000 job applicants has been stolen from one its vendors.

Applicants who registered for positions at Gap or any of its Old Navy or Banana Republic stores in the US, Puerto Rico and Canada between July 2006 and June 2007 have now potentially had their personal information exposed.

The data could include Social Security numbers and employment history.

Gap has said that it is offering free credit monitoring services and fraud resolution assistance for the next year to all those affected.

"We are reviewing the facts and circumstances that led to this incident, and will take appropriate steps to help prevent something like this happening again, " said chief executive Glenn Murphy.

Gap claimed that not all applicants are affected as the company uses more than one vendor to manage its job applicant data, and that Canadian applicants' Social Insurance numbers were not among the details stolen.

Calum Macleod, European director at security firm Cyber-Ark, argued that the data should have been encrypted.

"It clearly wasn't, so now the Social Security numbers, employment records and a wealth of other information on 800,000 people who applied for jobs at Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic and Outlet stores across the US, are potentially available to identity thieves," he said.
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